Monday, May 30, 2016

What's in my Trash?! #31

Traaaaaaaaaaash time! Some pictures that ended up upside down and proof that I did participate in my 30 day mask challenge. I didn't think I had that many empties this month until the items really started piling up in the throw away box as I was taking pictures of everything. It always makes me happy when there's a lot of things, one day the rate in which I accumulate items will match the rate in which I finish them up.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Current 5 Nail Favorites and 30 Day Mask Challenge Recap!

Image Source
Welcome to this slightly random post today. It's nearing the end of the month and I just realized I never put in an update on my mask challenge, but at the same time I really wanted to rave about some nail polishes. Naturally it made sense to just mash the two posts together for just one big post of random! As you can probably tell from my Nail of the Weeks lately, I've been very into the polish game. There are five polishes in particular that I find myself gravitating towards a lot so I think it was worth shouting them out individually.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Unboxing: Birchbox May 2016

This was almost like the box from hell for me. For once since I discovered that you can peek into your box I decided to let myself be surprised in hopes of rekindling the excitement and love for Birchbox but I was let down in a HUGE way. There's pretty much one product in here that I like but it's also completely unusable. Let's get on with the disappointment. 

For those of you that are unfamiliar with Birchbox it is one of those monthly beauty sample boxes where they send you a box of 5-6 (sometimes even 7 with bonus extras) samples and deluxe samples. Occasionally there will be full size products too! The brands they send are all fairly high-end and they have a point system and customer service staff that just can't be beat. For $10 a month you are able to select a sample from a select group of choices and have more surprises delivered to you based on your beauty profile! Have I convinced you to sign up yet? If so I would love it if you would do it through my referral link here! Feel free to also go to www.birchbox.com if you want to look around without any strings attached to me.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Nails of the Week #81: Mellow Yellow

I don't know how I feel about this color at all, when I bought it I thought it was one of those textured polishes and it definitely isn't. It ended up being a shimmery polish however the color looks horribly sickly against my skin so sadly I don't think I'll really be going for this guy. It would definitely look better on paler skin so I think I might try again in winter, or perhaps on my toes. In general it wasn't a great polish to work with either, it was streaky and clumped together so I actually had to go with shimmer top coat to kind of smooth everything out. The topper didn't really take away from the natural color at all, it kind of just enhanced the shimmer.

So this marigold color is Sephora Formula X in Turbo and it's just a shimmery yellow color. As I mentioned above it wasn't the best formula to work with, but for a yellow it actually went on fairly opaque. On top I used Essie in Shine of the Times to kind of smooth everything out and fill in some of the bald patches with some distracting shimmer. I'm just not in love with this, I feel like it looks kind of juvenile and tacky. Does anyone have tips on how to wear this better? Perhaps as an accent nail instead of a full hand manicure?

Friday, May 20, 2016

Things I've Bought Recently

Image Source
Now I remember why I don't read blogs, simply because it drives me to buy random things! This is especially bad when it comes to subscription boxes, I'll just be perusing my blog feed and something will catch my eye and suddenly I'm $500 poorer drowning in a sea of boxes. Okay that's a bit of an exaggeration but you get the point. Reflecting back on some of my purchases, it's a little ridiculous, so naturally I decided this would be a great blog post and possibly entice someone else to buy into these silly little things I've picked up recently.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Throwback: 4MM May 2015

Earlier this month when I was putting together my 4 Minute Month for April I stumbled across some unseen footage...my very first 4MM that I never published! Last May I started this project and missed the last two days of the month and apparently decided this wasn't worthy to be published. I thought it would be fun to still edit it together and this time around I just took out the dates so really if you weren't reading about it here you wouldn't know that it wasn't a full month. And as a shameless self promotion you can also check out my 4MM from August 2015February 2016, and April 2016!

As you can see, nothing really is different but there was the addition of a weekend trip to Reno which was pretty neat with some beautiful scenery and wild horses in the backyard. I think the biggest difference was back when we were a one dog home, my (not so little) puppy didn't come along until a week after this video ended. That's something I really wish I did, a few seconds of everyday with a puppy, I think the next set where we have the crazy idea of having two Great Dane puppies at once, I will have to do that just so you can watch these pups grow.

Anyways, without further ado, here is my throwback video of what I did in May 2015!

Monday, May 16, 2016

Nails of the Week #80: Pixar Up Inspired

Continuing on with bright and fun nails, it's been a challenge to work with this lighter colors but I'm really perfecting the skill of thin and even coats so that's a win. I'm also impressed with how many weeks I've managed to keep up the fun designs instead of just being boring with solid colors. This week features nails inspired by one of my favorite movies, Up! You know, that movie about the flying house with the balloons? If I was very skilled I would have drawn in the house too but I'm not quite to that level. The cloud nails actually remind me of Toy Story too, so I say these are just very Pixar nails.

I used SO many colors for this manicure because of the balloons and frankly it's hard to distinguish, let's start with the base coat. For the background of the balloons I used my new OPI in Alpine Snow for that white background. I felt that an accent nail with the balloons would stand out better with white and the balloon colors would be brighter versus sticking them onto a blue background too. For the blue nails I actually used a matte color Essie in Sea the Sights simply because these matte colors are easier to work with since they are a more opaque color that aren't as runny so it is much easier to achieve the look with fewer coats. The clouds were drawn on with my trusty Color Club Duo Pen in White. As for the balloons, I'm going to just list out the colors here: Essie in A List, Essie in Sunday Funday, Butter London in Cheeky Chops, Essie in The More the Merrier, Essie in Butler Please, and Essie in The Girls Are Out. The strings were drawn using the Color Club Duo Pen in Silver Glitter.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Friday 5 Faves

Favorites favorites favorites! No not product favorites, just the usual monthly Friday 5 Faves. I have some strange ones this months, but of course I'll always lead off with my song favorite, so there's a constant. I guess it's worth mentioning that an unofficial favorite of mine has been nail art. I've been really into it and I think I'm getting a lot better at it! I realized any type of dot based designs I have a lot of control over and I'm really good so flowers, clouds, dots...all over it. Anyways, I digress.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Review: Valentia Skin Detoxifying Clay Mask

This partnership if you can call it that with Brandbacker is pretty great. It gives me the opportunity to work some different brands and try some stuff that I might not have normally gotten my hands on to. Lately I've been working a lot of Valentia Skin Care and I've had the chance to try out and review a range of their products. When I was contacted about their newest product the Skin Detoxifying Clay Mask, I just knew I had to get my hands on it because it would be perfect for my congested skin. First let's take a look at the company itself as well as a little information about the product.

About the Company
The Roman Goddess of healing, Valentia, relied on nature’s gifts to heal the citizens of Umbria. Whether matriarchs seeking to maintain their youthful look or farmers seeking help for sun damaged skin, Valentia used berries, herbs, barks and other natural ingredients. We also rely on all natural ingredients due to their protective, preventative and corrective powers.

Just like our namesake, Valentia Skin Care products have been formulated with natural and organic cosmetic ingredients that will repair and protect the skin.

After performing extensive research into what skin care customers find most important, we found an overwhelming demand for skin care that is natural, free of toxins and paraben-free. Natural ingredients with an organic base have proven most effective at repairing skin damaged by sun or wind, preventing signs of aging such as wrinkles, dark spots, and reversing the effects of oxidative stress on the skin.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Nails of the Week #79: Awesome Blossoms

I'm running out of flower puns, but at the same time I really can't stop with the flower manicures because it's finally something I mastered. I think it's also safe to say something finally clicked and I pretty much mastered my base coat application, or at least the last few ones have been on point. I'm very proud. Random though, my hands are extremely dry lately despite my constant application of hand cream and it's especially painful after a manicure session even though I usually wait a day between taking off the old polish and applying the new stuff. Hmm.

This time around I used the always lovely Essie in Bikini So Teeny for the periwinkle base and my trusty Color Club Duo Pen in White to draw on the little flowers. Originally I wanted to add some gold glitter to the centers but then I realized I did some flowers real tiny and didn't want to go digging for some dotting tools so I pulled out my Color Club Duo Pen in Black to dot the centers and I actually love how it turned out. Very clean and fun plus easy to do! It takes longer waiting for all the thin coats of base color to dry than to actually draw on the flowers and since it's just little dots that don't exactly need to be precise even my shaking left hand can handle doing it without any help.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Fitness Friday!

April was a pretty good month, I only fell off the train towards the end of it but I put a pretty strong showing for most of it. I'm extremely proud of what I was able to accomplish, and the the vacation plus weekend adventures really helped to contribute to that.

So for this month I'm putting in the same goal that I've had for a few months now which is 42000 steps in a week or roughly 6000 steps in a day. I don't want to graduate to a higher goal until I can meet this goal again. April did give me some hope though, I was prepared to pull back to the lower goal of 5000 steps/35000 weekly because it was starting to get depressing. I had a lot of incentive to walk this past month so I want to see how I can do with a more regular month after a high achieving one. Anyways, let's take a look at April.

April 1st: 3412
April 2nd: 11630
April 3rd: 6004
Week Total: 21046/18000

April 4th: 7317
April 5th: 6184
April 6th: 6681
April 7th: 7440
April 8th: 4602
April 9th: 8026
April 10th: 10346
Week Total: 50596/42000

April 11th: 21071
April 12th: 20043
April 13th: 22336
April 14th: 11157
April 15th: 20548
April 16th: 5255
April 17th: 3832
Week Total: 104242/42000

April 18th: 10272
April 19th: 7187
April 20th: 11204
April 21st: 11324
April 22nd: 10356
April 23rd: 6050
April 24th: 7848
Week Total: 64241/42000

April 25th: 3366
April 26th: 3092
April 27th: 3092
April 28th: 10095
April 29th: 10573
April 30th: 6236
Week Total: 36454/36000

Water life is going great. Controlling my portions and knowing what is going into my lunches has help astronomically with the bloating. Overall I'm feeling less fluffy, even if visually you can't tell, I can tell just by the way my clothes are sitting and how I just feel that I have slimmed down a bit which is great!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

30 Day Face Mask Challenge

I know May has 31 days but I didn't start this until the 2nd making this actually a 30 day challenge! If you've been following my blog, you know that picking up face masks is a huge weakness of mine. I have a stash of over 200 sheet masks and somewhere between 30-40 bottles and tubs of assorted face masks. I always tell myself to just work through what I have but I find myself finishing out and buying another 3 masks without fail. As an attempt to make a dent in my monstrous stash I want to do a 30 day challenge of using a face mask everyday for 30 days straight. Now my skin is either going to be flawless and glowing by the end of the month, or horribly disfigured. Wish me luck. I've come up with a rough schedule for the month alternating the different types of mask I have to give my skin a break as well as what fits conveniently in my schedule. If you wanted to follow along with me I'm off by one day so even though today is the 4th, I'm on Day 3 meaning I would be doing a sheet mask tonight. I know it's confusing. Anyways, I'll give an update closer to the end of the month, I probably won't have an entire dedicated post but I'll put it in somewhere.

Monday, May 2, 2016

April 2016 Favorites

This month has been a break through for my skin, I feel like the first time I've won the fight since I even started puberty so naturally this month of favorites is dedicated to just that. I have a handful of products to give recognition to which has allowed my skin to be the clearest it's been for a very long time. I hold my breath slightly saying this but I want to go as far as stating that even my clogged pore may be clearing up! That has been a sore spot on my cheek for a few years now and I'm in disbelief at the notion that it may be gone! It's worth it to now break each product down individually. There's also a few random favorites at the end to.